The semester is about to wrap-up. You can pretty much feel your students’ stress levels the moment you see them. Help them de-stress with activities you can do in your store. For your students, especially first year students, their stress levels are at an all-time high. For some, the stress of being away from home starts on day one, others the stress of making friends is enough to do it. Now add on finishing the semester with final exams and final projects and you could have the recipe for a breakdown. Though students might not be thinking to go to their campus bookstore to de-stress you can certainly give them a little surprise. In fact, many stores take an active approach to helping their students deal with their anxiety. Provide your students with something to do to help them relax. Here’s some ideas to get you started:
- Providing parents of students an opportunity to give their kids a care packages. Not only does this increase foot traffic in the store, but it can also lead to sales.
- Provide adult coloring books. These are a fantastic way to help your students relax. Consider putting some sheets out for students to pick out on their own, set out some colored pencils and let them go to town. You can also use this opportunity to grow your sales: one bookstore set out a display of adult coloring books and colored pencils and watched their sales of these items grow 150%.
- Create a display of wellness items. The University of St. Thomas Bookstore suggests stocking up on stress balls, having said that they sold out of their supply 2 days after putting the items on display.
- Who doesn’t love puppies? UC Davis Stores of the University of California does an animal event for their finals week where they bring in puppies and kitties that students can cuddle with. You could also bring in therapy animals for your students to spend some time with.
During these busy times it is easy for your staff to get stressed too. Remind them to be using their customer service skills. Positivity is proven to help reduce levels of stress hormones. Keep your students and your staff in good spirits. Remember how important it is to show your students that you care. Even if it’s by doing something as small as verbally telling your students, “good luck with your finals” that small gesture can go a long way.